COVID-19 Updates and Impacts on 20/21 SeasonAnnouncements
The recent changes to COVID-19 within the United Kingdom and the number of cases on a steady rise throughout the country have lead to an impact on the provisional QuidditchUK 2020/2021 season and tournaments. Wherever possible, QuidditchUK need to put the health and safety of their members first, and adjustments to planned events and timelines have been made accordingly to reflect this.
Everything listed below is pending on continuous recovery and review of COVID-19, and that any return to play timeline is both safe and viable for our clubs and members. We are constantly reviewing the situation both nationally and internationally, and reviewing official advice from Sport England and the UK Government.
Clubs may continue to train per the QuidditchUK provided guidelines.
We've seen great initiative taken by teams up and down the country in creating safe and engaging training opportunities for their players within the restricted parameters.
Numbers should remain to a minimum wherever possible, and maintain against both the recommended and legal limits of outdoor gatherings in every circumstance.
Our guidelines are under constant review and we encourage club leadership to stay informed. Further information can be found here.
European Quidditch Cup
At the time of writing, both EQC Division 1 and Division 2 are still scheduled for early 2021. Bids for Division 1 EQC have closed and are being currently being reviewed by Quidditch Europe. We will inform affected clubs directly should any changes impact EQC.
We are maintaining the same qualification process wherein teams that qualified via European Qualifier Tournament 2020 or by winning their respective Regional Tournament will retain their spot and seeding as they head into EQC 2021.
Updated Policies and Player Caps
Alongside the new website, QuidditchUK have also been revisiting their policies as they pertain to both individuals and clubs.
The Club and Team Membership Policy outlines definitions for member clubs across QuidditchUK, and provides caps and ratios for university clubs over the next four competitive seasons.
With COVID-19 affecting recruitment of clubs, particularly university clubs, we have determined there will be no cap of community or otherwise non-student members competing on university clubs for the 2020/2021 season.
2020 / 2021 Tournaments
Finally, and most importantly, with a rise in reported COVID-19 cases across the United Kingdom, QuidditchUK have made the decision to not host any tournaments or fixtures for the remainder of 2020.
This does, unfortunately, mean that there will be no Community Fixture in October and no University Cup in November. While this is disappointing and not an easy decision to make, we need to put the wellbeing of our community ahead of all else, and hosting hundreds of individuals in a close quarters contact sport puts too many people at risk.
When the new season had been drafted, all information had been pointing towards a steady decline in cases, and we believed there was a enough time between late June (when the events were drafted) and mid-October for the worst of COVID-19 to have passed and to for us safely host a tournament at the national or regional scale required. However, with numbers again on the rise, it would be irresponsible and unreasonable of us to ask and expect several hundred athletes and volunteers to travel to a singular area to compete in the current circumstances.
We are reviewing the situation and whether we can allow small club matches to take place within given regions over the course of the coming months on an unofficial level, but with the current number of growing cases this is not looking likely, as we are not planning to reintroduce contact to trainings in the near future.
We still intend to host official events in the second half of the year where possible, but the nature and scale of these events is still to be determined and will depend on the development of COVID-19 going forward. At this stage it is not out of the question that QuidditchUK hosts 1-3 events next year that would encompass the BQC and Development Cup aspects of our regular season, but QuidditchUK's Executive Management Team will take on this decision when there is more information available to determine whether this would be a safe plan of action.
Any developments in this planning process will be communicated with clubs and community members.